My mind cannot comprehend how anyone can calculate these kinds of things, but I know my father-in-law and son will enjoy seeing these!
The scalding hot sand on the beach this week reminded me of a practical lesson and a helped me understand a deeper spiritual truth.
I had both babies – Zephaniah on my hip and Eden walking beside me. The three of us were heading out to the beach ahead of the rest of the family.
The boardwalk was hot under our bare feet. Towards the end of the boardwalk, Eden had reached her limit, so I scooped her up to my other hip. My feet were hot too, but I pressed on, because the only times I had been out on the beach in the recent years had been in the evenings when the sand is squishy and cool. I didn’t remember how torturously hot it got in midday.
Even after the first few steps in the sand, I thought I could run and make it to a place of relief. The babies bounced as my running and my exclamations of pain became more frantic. I could feel the skin on my feet burning. I couldn’t make it another step, but at this point, I was midway between the boardwalk and the ocean. There was literally nothing I could do. No one there to help.
Suddenly I remembered the towel I was carrying. I flung it onto the sand and stood on it trying to recalibrate a plan.
But there was no other plan. There was nothing to do but continue on to the beach or retreat back to the boardwalk. Both would involve pain.
I took a few more breaths allowing my feet to have another moment of a reprieve before continuing on. The babies clutched me as I snatched up the towel and ran on. Zephaniah laughed from all the bouncing, totally ignorant of the pain of his mother.
I had to stop twice more. I was desperate to reach the cool water. But my joy over finally approaching it was hindered by the sharp shells that had recently been pumped out of the sea and onto the beach to make a bigger beach area. The shells hadn’t had time to be broken down further and dulled on their edges by the waves. They were the grand finale to my torturous journey and put the final touches on my raw feet before I made it to the water.
As I reflected on the whole event, the first and most obvious lesson learned was to never traverse hot sand without proper footwear.
As I further reflected, I noted that the idea of setting the babies down in the hot sand to relieve myself had never crossed my mind. I sometimes question my selflessness as a mother, so this was reassuring to me. And in some small way it taught me a bit more about the love of my Savior.
He endured everything willingly, without resentment in order to carry me to a place of safety. He ran an infinitely more torturous race not merely as a grand display of His perfection (which is easy for me to
imagine), but because of His great love for me (much harder for me to grasp).
So, though it was a time of suffering, it became one of my favorite memories from our trip to the beach this year.
Several members of our family are wanting to hear more from God. As we were doing our family Bible time today regarding that topic, we reviewed the verse:
Anyone who asks receives
And he who seeks finds
And to him who knocks the door will be opened
I prayed silently that He would show me something and answer our prayers to hear more from Him. And then I got a simple, but profound picture regarding the asking, seeking, and knocking.
I had always regarded them as different ways of going after Him. On some occasions we could ask, sometimes we could seek, and sometimes we could knock. But the picture today involved all three working together. So, someone seeking God (as we are) would be like the person I saw – a man passing through the streets of a small village looking for a particular person.
First, we have to ask for directions. How can I get where I want to go? The one who asks receives those directions. But the search doesn’t end there. We mustn’t be satisfied to receive instructions and to simply know where the one we seek is lodging. No, we should only satisfied when we see the face of the one we seek.
So next, we go off on the journey of seeking. We must follow the directions we were given. Turn at this street. Go this far. Avoid this place. And then we will reach our destination. But the journey still isn’t complete. Once we reach the place of the one we seek, we mustn’t be satisfied to simply sit out front, waiting and hoping to catch a glimpse of the sought-after one. No, there is still another step.
Finally, we must knock, and it is *then* that the door is opened and we can behold the face of the one we seek.
May we follow through on the journey of seeking Him. May we experience the joy of beholding His face regularly!
Here’s a neat cough syrup that several of my mom friends swear by. The cough syrup part begins at 1:50.
- Dice an onion.
- Layer onion with drizzled honey until you reach the top of a pint jar.
- Cover and leave at room temperature up to 24 hours. (You can serve the syrup almost right away if you need to.)
- After 24 hours, strain onions out and refrigerate. The syrup will stay good indefinitely.
- Give 1 tsp as many times per day as needed.
This is a REALLY helpful visual of the difference between effacement and dilation!!!